2016 – 8th Grade National 2nd Place Winner

Sarah Crosby, Washington.


Albert Einstein once said, “I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.” It is because I agree with Albert Einstein that I believe that we must value imagination over knowledge. I think this is because without imagination most of the things we use today would not exist. I will explain this by first addressing why imagination and knowledge are individually important and then concentrating on why imagination is more essential.

If we look back through history, we see the importance of both imagination and knowledge. Imagination is defined as the ability to think of new things. This means that it is thinking of something that is not of the ordinary. Knowledge is defined as the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject. Imagination is important because it helps us form new ideas. Without imagination, we would not have the incentive to create. Imagination is the spark that starts the fire of creativity. Knowledge is important because it is what makes us able to accomplish what we think we can create. Knowledge and imagination have to be entwined to be able to accomplish an idea. You first need imagination to think go the idea and then knowledge to achieve it. Knowledge and imagination are both extremely important. However, when we ask the question “Which is more important imagination or knowledge” I believe the answer is imagination.

Throughout history, man has tried to invent things that seemed impossible. For instance, we have always thought about flying. The ideas of flying dates all they way back to ancient Greek mythology. In one story there was a man named Daedalus who was an engineer and was imprisoned by King Minos. He escaped by creating wings from wax and flying out a window. Throughout history, humanity has tried to fly. How could we have even thought of the idea without imagination? Imagination is thinking about something out of the ordinary. An idea of people flying is definitely unusual. However, thanks to imagination we were able to make it possible. Nevertheless, we did not stop there. After we could fly, we thought about going to the moon. This was again something completely out of the ordinary. Without imagination, this would not have even been thought of. There are many other examples of imagination starting ideas. Just a few instances are refrigerators, phones, the lightbulb, computers, and the internet. Albert Einstein said, “knowledge is limited.” Knowledge is what you know from a practical understanding of a subject. However, many inventions we use now were not very realistic when they were though of. That is why imagination influences society so much more than knowledge. Because imagination is what makes people able to create.

Imagination and knowledge are important. However, when compared, we can see that imagination is most important. As Carl Sagan once said, “Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere.”



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